points depending upon the application. Another benefit is the ability to review real-time data from the building. A monitoring web site is under development that will allow visitors to see, in real-time, the energy being generated along with reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The monitoring site will also provide documentation for building owners who are using the technology to resell energy, gain tax credits and displace between 20-50% of heating fuel consumption.
Architects and engineers will find the technology desirable because various combinations can be included in the design phase to increase effectiveness. Sitting atop the 404 hall is a small eight panel SolarDuct product that incorporates photovoltaic cells and has generated 500kWh since installation. With this energy generation, McCrossin, who is a state Renewable Energy Credit aggregator, is set to sell the energy credits on the market.
“The payback on this project is expected in five years. When that occurs the hall will be generating its own heating energy and can either sell the excess back to our utility or take the credits and save the heating costs,” said Mr. Zettlemoyer.
As America’s buildings – particularly the siding and sheeting aspects – continue to age, the potential for retrofitting increases. Combine the ability to reduce the carbon footprint of a building along with the various tax credits and incentives and SolarWall becomes a perfect alternative.
Throughout the United States there is an estimated 250 million square feet of siding that has or will soon exceed its lifespan. Replacing just 25% has the potential to result in significant work for the ironworker and a strong impact on energy savings.
Not only is this technology applicable to buildings and warehouses, but it can also be designed to fit school buildings, municipal buildings, colleges and universities, health care centers and hospitals. Combine these applications with the various tax incentives and grants available and installing SolarWall becomes a very viable option.
PITTSBURGH PUBLIC SCHOOLS TO HARVEST YEAR ROUND
As summer passes into autumn and winter nears, farmers and
gardeners will soon be harvesting their final crops for the year.
Pennsylvania’s climate is ideal for producing an abundance of apples, cabbage, pumpkins and other fall produce. But come November,most crops can only be picked at the local grocers. But there’s one commodity that Pennsylvania can harvest throughout the year and it doesn’t take a green thumb, only green thinking.It’s rainwater and it’s about to be harvested by the Pittsburgh Public School System.
At its Central Operations Center on Pittsburgh’s South Side, new piping and filters have been installed on six roof drains. Once used to carry
and discharge rainwater (and melting snow) into the city’s storm sewers, the pipes now transport the water
Cement Masons Local #526 Business Representative Matt Just kneels at a recent pour of pervious concrete in front of the new Consolidation Buildingat the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System’s University Drive Division.
GREEN AND GREY MIX WELL FOR LOCAL CEMENT MASONS
Mixing grey with green doesn’t bring very exciting results, that is unless you’re a cement mason working for Local #526. For them, grey and green means one thing: pervious concrete—one of the latest green building materials to hit Pennsylvania.
Unlike typical concrete, pervious concrete consists of hydraulic cement and coarse aggregate that allow it to be porous, enabling rainwater to seep through the concrete and back into the ground.Recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for its contributions to storm water management, pervious concrete is showing up more and more throughout Pennsylvania, including Allegheny County.
“While pervious concrete has been around for a few years, its application is brand new to this area,” said Matt Just, Business Representative for Cements Masons Local #526. “Had it been used more widely several years ago, it could have helped alleviate much of the flash flooding that occurred in Carnegie, Etna and other parts of the county.
“It’s becoming the material of choice for a number of owners and developers who are looking to reduce and avoid storm sewer waste. When used in parking lots, there’s no need for catch basins or water collection systems, as the water runs right into the ground like Mother Nature intended.”
Among other locations where pervious concrete has been applied in western Pennsylvania is at the VA Healthcare System in Oakland. According to Mr. Just, it has also been used on sidewalks at Penn State University’s main campus. He added that while not yet popular for residential or highway use, pervious concrete could have great application for landscapers and gardeners who want to reduce rainwater runoff.
Cement Masons Local #526 offers an eight-hour class for its apprentices and journeymen on how to properly mix and apply pervious concrete. Upon successful completion of the class, members are certified in its use by the Pennsylvania Aggregates and Cement Association. Certification is also offered by the Operative Plasterers and Cement Masons International Association.